How My Last N500 Saved My Life

Counting Money

Adulting is very hard o! Entrepreneurship is even harder. Kai! Chasing your debtors is a full-time business. Please if you’re like me and you cannot pursue people for your money, just rethink am. Entrepreneurship is not your blessing.

I make shoes for a living and I spent a lot of ‘join join’ money from family and friends, to train myself. I worked overtime and delivered my first set of orders within a month of finishing training! Only for most customers to tell me that they will pay later. Later, when you are already wearing my shoes, are you mad ni?

Before I knew it, money was flying out and nothing was coming in. I was now begging people. (If you owe someone how can you be balling on Instagram for God’s sake!) Before I could say ‘mogbe o’, only 525 was left in the akant. Don’t ask me how but that was the day that all hell broke loose.

I was calculating whether to enter one shop, buy a plate of rice and a bottle of soft drink with my last money and wait for hunger to kill me or whatsapp my debtors. You don’t know how good your mathematics is until you don’t have money. That’s how mega-calculation began.

I decided to WhatsApp my people with an epistle of my life and I waited for 2 hours after, no alert. Yepah! I was checking my texts every 1 minute for a bank credit alert when I found out that I had extra N50 as airtime. Issalie! So, I sat down on the floor of my room and spoke to God please lead me to the right person that will hear my voice and break.

I called 1 woman who bought shoes for her entire family of 7. Kai! Aunty began apologising and explaining that she had been out of the country. 20 minutes after and ‘ping!’, I don get alert God win!

It was later I found out that the extra 50 bucks was not magic or misplaced credit. Apparently, you get like an extra 5% or 10% on MTN if you buy credit throughyour bank’s ATM, or via text.

Lucky me, abi. (Since then I don’t use the scratch card or paper. That extra is smart money. That’s gist for another day). Plus, I have wisened up o, I now demand 50% upfront payment on all shoes. I cannot comman go and die, na Lagos we dey.

– Rita Effiong is a budding shoemaker in Lagos

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